Hall of Fame Lions

With Scottish Rugby having announced its inaugural Hall of Fame inductees, we take a closer look at some of the legendary Lions among that list. [more]

Hall of Fame Lions

With Scottish Rugby having announced its inaugural Hall of Fame inductees, we take a closer look at some of the legendary Lions among that list.

A total of nine Lions were honoured by the SRU, starting with a true Scottish rugby hero…


Pre World War 1

David Bedell-Sivright (Cambridge Uni, Edinburgh Uni ,West of Scotland)
B&I Lions 1903, 1904

Debuting against Wales in 1900, Bedell-Sivright went on to win 22 Scotland caps. A pioneer of the wing forward role, he was regarded as the hardest man to play for Scotland and is the only Scot ever to play in three Triple Crown winning sides (1901, 1903 and 1907). He was the only player to tour with both the 1903 and 1904 British Isles sides (captaining the 1904 Australasian tour, aged 23) and also captained Scotland.

It is alleged that one night, following some riotous celebrations after an international, he rugby tackled a cart-horse in Edinburgh’s Princess Street. He is also alleged to have lain down on the cable tram rails in the Scottish capital and held up traffic for an hour, with no policeman being foolhardy enough to disturb him.

As well as winning 22 caps as a forward, he was also a good enough boxer to have become the Scottish Amateur Heavyweight Champion in 1909. From Fettes School he went on to both Edinburgh and Cambridge Universities’ first teams, figuring in four Varsity Matches. He travelled to South Africa with the 1903 Lions and then captained the 1904 tourists to Australia and New Zealand.

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He played his only Test for the Lions in Australia in 1904, leading his side to a convincing 17-0 victory in Sydney, and was at the centre of one of the most contentious incidents in Lions history at the Newcastle cricket ground on 6 July, 1904.

Captaining the tourists against a Northern Districts team, he took the unprecedented step of leading his team off the pitch after the referee, Hugh Dolan, had dismissed Lions forward Denys Dobson (Oxford University and England) for allegedly addressing an obscene remark to him after awarding two free kicks to the home side.

The Lions players were off the field for a full 20 minutes, during which time a discussion was held involving Bedell-Sivright, his vice-captain Teddy Morgan and the referee. This is how the local newspapers reported the incident:

“After a lapse of about 10 minutes Sivright, the English captain, and Morgan, the vice-captain, walked across from the British quarters and conferred with the referee. The Britishers were willing to continue the game but insisted on Dobson being allowed to play. The referee, however, held to his decision stating he would not officiate if Dobson were allowed on the ground. The British captain and his lieutenant returned to the dressing room and it seemed as if the game had ended, but after a delay of fully 20 minutes the Britishers returned without Dobson and resumed the game with 13 men They were greeted with a ringing cheer.”

The tourists, who were down to 13 men at this stage having earlier lost Fred Jowett through injury, went on to win the game 17-3. After the match, Bedell-Sivright claimed that he regarded the referee’s decision as a reflection on the personal character of the whole team.

Dobson later denied the offence and claimed it was a case of mistaken identity and that Mr Nolan had his back to him at the time. At a New South Wales rugby union disciplinary hearing he was cleared of the charge of using indecent language, but found guilty of using an improper expression and suffered no further penalty.

Bedell-Sivright broke a leg in the opening match in New Zealand, against South Canterbury, Canterbury and West Coast and did not play again on tour.

In 1915, Bedell-Sivright was a surgeon serving with the Medical Unit of the Royal Naval Division stationed at Gallipoli during the Dardanelles Campaign of WW1. After a period onshore in the trenches while serving at an advanced dressing station, he was bitten by an unidentified insect.

He complained of being fatigued and was taken offshore and transferred to the hospital ship HMHS Dunluce Castle. Two days later, on 5 September, he died of septicaemia and was buried at sea. He was 34.

David Bedell-Sivright’s Lions Record

Overall – P 20 W 14 L 6

1903 – South Africa

P 12 W 6 L 6

NB Lions score comes second, with the home team first. For example, 0-15 is a win for the Lions.

09/07/1903   W. Province Country       13 – 7
11/07/1903   W. Province Towns         12 – 3
13/07/1903   Western Province            8 – 4
18/07/1903   Port Elizabeth                  0 – 15
20/07/1903   Eastern Province             0 – 12   Try
22/07/1903   Grahamstown                  7 – 28  
25/07/1903   King Williams Town         3 – 37  
27/07/1903   East London                     5 – 7                
01/08/1903   Griqualand West              11 – 0  
04/08/1903   Griqualand West              8 – 6                
08/08/1903   Transvaal                         12 – 3  
11/08/1903   Pretoria                            3 – 15  

1904 – Australia / New Zealand

P 8 W 8

22/06/1904   Western Districts              6 – 21    Try
25/06/1904   New South Wales             6 – 29    Con
02/07/1904   Australia                            0 – 17               
06/07/1904   Northern Districts              3 – 17    DG
09/07/1904   Queensland                       5 – 24    Try, DG
13/07/1904   Brisbane                            3 – 17    Try
06/08/1904   Cant/S Cant/W Coast       3 – 5      Try
31/08/1904   New South Wales             0 – 5

1945-1959
Ken Scotland (Cambridge University, Heriot’s, Leicester)
B&I Lions 1959

Scotland won 32 caps for his country and was a world-class and gifted individual, who set new standards for full-back play, pioneering the counter-attack role. One of the stars of the 1959 Lions tour to Australasia, scoring 12 tries and 71 points, he played in five of the six Tests on tour. He also represented Scotland at cricket.

Ken Scotland’s Lions Record

P 21 W 17 L 4

23/05/1959        Victoria                         18 – 53  Try
02/06/1959        Queensland                  11 – 39  Tries 2
06/06/1959        Australia                        6 – 17    DG
13/06/1959        Australia                        3 – 24    Con, Pen
20/06/1959        Hawkes Bay                 12 – 52   Tries 3
27/06/1959        Auckland                       10 – 15                         
01/07/1959        NZ Universities             13 – 25   Cons 2, Pen
04/07/1959        Otago                            26 – 8    Con
11/07/1959        Southland                      6 – 11   DG – 2
18/07/1959        New Zealand                 18 – 17  Pen
25/07/1959        Canterbury                    20 – 14  DG
01/08/1959        Wellington                     6 – 21               
08/08/1959        Taranaki                        3 – 15    Pen, DG
11/08/1959        Manawatu/H’whenua     6 – 26               
25/08/1959        Wairarapa/Bush            11 – 37 
29/08/1959        New Zealand                  22 – 8               
02/09/1959        New Zealand Juniors     9 – 29               
05/09/1959        New Zealand Maoris      6 – 12               
09/09/1959        Bay of Plenty/T.Valley    24 – 26  Tries 2
12/09/1959        North Auckland              13 – 35   Tries 2
19/09/1959        New Zealand                  6 – 9

1960s 
Sandy Carmichael (West of Scotland)
B&I Lions Tours 1971, 1974

Carmichael was one of the speediest, most versatile props ever to pull on an international jersey. Making his debut against Ireland in 1967, he went on to earn 50 caps, a record for a Scottish forward at the time. He played for the Lions on the 1971 tour to New Zealand and 1974 tour of South Africa.

One of the bravest and fairest players to grace the game, his last international was against Ireland in 1978. He was forced to leave the 1971 Lions tour after fracturing his cheekbone in the stormy clash with Canterbury and went on to become Scotland’s most capped prop.

In 1974, he made his second tour and maintained his amazing record of never having been on the losing side for the Lions.

Sandy Carmichael’s Lions Record
Overall P 16 W 16

1971 Australia / New Zealand
P 6 W 6

5/05/1971         New South Wales              12 – 14 
22/05/1971       Counties/Thames Valley    3 – 25   
05/06/1971       Wellington                           9 – 47    Try
09/06/1971       S/Mid Canty/North Otago    6 – 25   
12/06/1971       Otago                                  9 – 21               
19/06/1971       Canterbury                          3 – 14   

1974 South Africa
P 10 W 10

15/05/1974        Western Transvaal         13 – 59 
23/05/1974        Boland                             6 – 33   
01/06/1974        Western Province           8 – 17               
11/06/1974        Western Province Unis   4 – 26               
18/06/1974        Rhodesia                         6 – 42               
29/06/1974        Orange Free State          9 – 11               
03/07/1974        Griqualand West             16 – 69             
09/07/1974        African XV                       10 – 56             
17/07/1974        Border                             6 – 26   
23/07/1974        Eastern Transvaal          10 – 33

""

Andy Irvine starred for the Lions on three successive tours

1970s
Andy Irvine (Heriot’s)
B&I Lions Tours 1974, 1977, 1980

Andy won 51 caps – 15 as captain – and scored 273 points for Scotland. One of rugby’s greatest running full-backs, he made his international debut against New Zealand in 1972.  He went on three Lions tours, playing in nine Tests, and scored a record five tries in a single game against King Country during the 1977 trip New Zealand.

He was recently named as the manager of the 2013 British & Irish Lions tour to Australia and is a former president of the SRU and current chairman of the Magners League.

1974 South Africa
P 15 W 14 D 1

8/05/1974         South West Africa           16 – 23   Con 1, Pens 2
26/05/1974        Eastern Province            14 – 28             
29/05/1974        South Western Districts  0 – 97   
04/06/1974        SAR Federation XV          6 – 37    Con, Pens 3
11/06/1974        W. Province Unis             4 – 26    Cons 2, Pens 2
18/06/1974        Rhodesia                          6 – 42    Try, Cons 3, Pens 3, DG
27/06/1974        Quaggas                          16 – 20  Pens 2, Con
03/07/1974        Griqualand West              16 – 69  Cons 8, Pen
06/07/1974        Northern Transvaal          12 – 16  Con, Pen
09/07/1974        African XV                        10 – 56  Try, Cons 5, Pens 2
13/07/1974        South Africa                     9 – 26    Con, Pens 2
17/07/1974        Border                              6 – 26    Con, Pens 4
20/07/1974        Natal                                 6 – 34    Tries 2
23/07/1974        Eastern Transvaal           10 – 33  Cons 2, Pens 3
27/07/1974        South Africa                     13 – 13  Try, Pen

1977 New Zealand
P 19 W 15 L 4

18/05/1977        Wairarapa/Bush1             3 – 41 
21/05/1977        Hawkes Bay                     11 – 13  Try
25/05/1977        Poverty Bay/East Coast   6 – 25   
28/05/1977        Taranaki                           13 – 21  Try, Con, Pens 2
01/06/1977        Wanganui/King Country   9 – 60    Tries 5
08/06/1977        Otago                               7 – 12   
11/06/1977        Southland                        12 – 20  Con
18/06/1977        New Zealand                   16 – 12  Pen
22/06/1977        S/Mid Can/N Otago         6 – 45    Try, Cons 6, Pens 3
25/06/1977        Canterbury                      13 – 14  PenS 2
02/07/1977        Wellington                       6 – 13   
09/07/1977        New Zealand                   9 – 13   
16/07/1977        Waikato                          13 – 18  Try
23/07/1977        Auckland                         15 – 34  Tries 2
30/07/1977        New Zealand                   19 – 7    Pen
06/08/1977        North Auckland                7 – 18
09/08/1977        Bay of Plenty                   16 – 23 
13/08/1977        New Zealand                   10 – 9   
16/08/1977        Fiji                                    25 – 21

1980 South Africa
P 8 W 6 L 2

07/06/1980       Transvaal                         12 – 32    Pen
14/06/1980       South Africa                     26 – 19    Pen
18/06/1980       Junior Springboks            6 – 17      Try
21/06/1980       N-E Transvaal                  9 – 16      Pens 2
28/06/1980       South Africa                     12 – 10
02/07/1980       SA Barbarians                 14 – 25     Try
05/07/1980       Western Province            6 – 37      Try, DG 
12/07/1908       South Africa                     13 – 17     Try

1980s 
Finlay Calder (Stewart’s-Melville FP) 
B&I Lions Tour 1989

Uncompromising in both attack and defence, Calder made his Scotland debut against France in 1986 and went on to win 34 caps. He was the first Scot to captain the Lions since Mike Campbell-Lamerton in 1966, the first winning captain since Willie John McBride in 1974 and the only 20th century captain to lead the team to a series victory after losing the opening Test.

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Finlay Calder and Sir Ian McGeechan are Scotland and Lions legends

1990s
Gavin Hastings (Cambridge Uni, Watsonians, London Scottish)
B&I Lions Tours 1989, 1993

Hastings was chosen by a public vote from the following candidates – Scott Hastings, David Sole, Gary Armstrong, Bryan Redpath and Alan Tait. He won 61 caps and was Scotland’s leading points scorer of his generation with 667. He captained both Scotland and the Lions, for whom he made six Test appearances, and played his final game at the 1995 World Cup in South Africa.

2000s
Sir Ian McGeechan (Headingley)
B&I Lions Tours 1974, 1977
B& I Lions Coach 1989, 1993, 1997, 2005, 2009

Sir Ian made his international debut as a player against New Zealand in 1972. Capped 32 times for Scotland, he toured with the Lions as a player in 1974 and 1977, featuring in all eight Tests.  

McGeechan played his last international in 1979 and soon moved into coaching, becoming assistant Scotland coach in 1986. Promoted to coach in 1988, his team won a Grand Slam in 1990. 

He was head coach on the Lions tours of 1989, 1993, 1997 and 2009 and was an assistant coach in 2005. He rejoined Scotland as head coach in 1999. 

Special Award
Jim Telfer

B&I Lions 1966, 1968
B&I Lions Coach 1993, 1997

Telfer represented Scotland and the Lions both as player and coach. He won 22 caps before becoming a pivotal figure in Scotland’s 1984 and 1990 Grand Slams as a coach. He also coached Scotland to their final Five Nations Championship triumph in 1999. 

He was head coach of the Lions in New Zealand in 1993 and assisted Ian McGeechan in plotting the downfall of the Springboks in 1997.

Special Award
Gordon Brown 
B&I Lions 1971, 1974, 1977

A triple Lion who won eight Test caps, Gordon followed his elder brother Peter into the Scottish pack. ‘Broon frae Troon’ was the son of a Scotland goalkeeper who won the first of his 30 Scottish caps in a win against South Africa in 1969. He died, aged 53, in 2001.

Scottish Rugby intends to hold subsequent induction ceremonies on a 12-18 month basis.

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